Headquartered in Dubai since 1991, Godwin Austen Johnson (GAJ), an award-winning architectural and interior design practice, has been responsible for creating some of the Emirate’s most iconic buildings and spaces. The CID Awards is excited to continue working with GAJ as social media partner.
“Participation is about raising our profile and putting our business at the forefront of people’s minds when they are looking for business partners. It is also important to celebrate success whatever the industry. The CID Awards enable people to come together, to be recognised for what they do in the industry and to be rewarded as the best in a particular category,” says Kevin McLachlan, associate partner and head of interior design at GAJ.
Commenting on the main challenges designers face today, McLachlan adds: “One of the most frustrating things, and I am sure I don’t stand alone in this, is that we see designers who have never stayed in a hotel being asked to design hotels. Everyone enjoys explaining what they do and how they do it differently, but I guess this has to be one of the most frustrating obstacles that clients come up against when conversing with design practices.
“I’m not saying designers must be inherently knowledgeable and should forego learning. It has taken myself over 25 years in the business developing more than 200 hospitality projects to gain the knowledge that I believe allows me to understand our clients better.”
He also says that a tidal shift is underway in Dubai.
“We have found that both client and designer, after a hiatus of reflection, are now approaching their projects with much more reflection and maturity,” says McLachlan.